The following list of Bible prayers is from the Dake Annotated Reference Bible, King James Version (Used by Permission – Dake Publishing). Dake found 176 prayers in the Old Testament and 46 in the New Testament. They include only actual worded prayers, not references to prayer. All statements as “he prayed, he entreated the Lord, he called upon the name of the Lord,” etc., are not prayers; they merely mention that certain people prayed.
Six Prayers in Genesis:
1. Abraham for an heir (40 words; Gen 15:2-3). Answered because God had promised (Gen 21:1-8).
2. Abraham for Ishmael to be his heir (7 words; Gen 17:18). Unanswered because it was not in harmony with God’s word and plan.
3. Abraham for Sodom to be spared if 10 persons were righteous (176 words; Gen 18:23-32). Unanswered because 10 righteous persons weren’t found (Gen 19:24).
4. Eliezer, steward of Abraham, for a bride for Isaac (110 words; Gen 24:12-14). Answered because it was according to God’s word (Gen 12:1-3,7; 13:15; 15:18; 17:7,19; 21:12).
5. Jacob for a blessing (Gen 28:20-22). Answered because of God’s plan for him (Gen 32:1-33:17).
6. Jacob for deliverance from Esau (130 words; Gen 32:9-12). Answered because of God’s word and plan for him (Gen 25:19-23; 26:3; 27:28-29; 28:3-4,13-15; 32:9).
References to prayer, entreating the Lord, calling on the name of the Lord, and groaning and being afflicted (Gen 12:7-8; 13:4; 16:11; 20:17-18; 25:21-23).
Four Prayers in Exodus:
7. Moses for Aaron to go with him (16 words; Ex 4:13). Answered because God wanted to please Moses (Ex 4:14-17).
8. Moses in complaint to God for not delivering Israel (42 words; Ex 5:22-23). Answered because of God’s word (Ex 3:8,12, 17-22).
9. Moses for forgiveness for Israel (39 words; Ex 32:31-32). Answered because of atonement and intercession (Ex 32:11-14,30-35) and because of God’s word (Ex 33:1-6,12-14).
10. Moses for God’s presence to go with Israel to Canaan (138 words; Ex 33:12-13,15-16). Answered because of God’s word (Ex 33:12-14) and His grace (Ex 33:17).
References to groaning, sighing, crying, and entreating the Lord (Ex 2:11,23-25; 3:7,9; 10:16).
Nine Prayers in Numbers:
11. Aaron for the blessing of God upon the people (32 words in the form of benediction; Num 6:24-26). Answered because of God’s promise (Num 6:27).
12. Moses for God to bless on the journey (27 words; Num 10:35-36). Answered when Israel lived free from sin, but unanswered when they sinned, which was according to God’s word (Ex 32:32-33).
13. Moses in complaining to God because the burden was too heavy (136 words; Num 11:10-15). Answered because of God’s words (Num 11:16-20,25-30).
14. Moses for God to show him what to do to give the people flesh (56 words; Num 11:21-22). Answered because of God’s word (Num 11:21) and to show His power (Num 11:23).
15. Moses for the healing of Miriam (8 words; Num 12:13). Answered because of God’s love for Moses (Num 12:14-16).
16. Moses for God to spare Israel and uphold His own honor (208 words; Num 14:13-19). Answered because of Moses’ prayer (Num 14:20).
17. Moses for judgment on sin (20 words; Num 16:15). Answered because of sin (Num 16:23-34).
18. Israel for forgiveness of sin (25 words; Num 21:7). Answered because of Moses’ prayer and by type of Christ on the cross (Num 21:7-9; 3:14-16).
19. Moses for a new leader of Israel (56 words; Num 27:16-17). Answered because of God’s plan for Israel (Num 27:18-23).
References to prayer (Num 11:2; 21:7).
Two Prayers in Deuteronomy:
20. Moses asking to go over into Canaan (59 words; Deut 3:24-25). Unanswered because of sin (Deut 3:26; Num 20:12).
21. Moses for Israel to be spared (114 words; Deut 9:26-29). Answered because of intercession of Moses (Ex 32:11-14).
References to prayer (Deut 9:20,26), also what to pray for elders at murder trials (Deut 21:6-9) and what all Israel should pray after obedience to the law (Deut 26:5-15).
Two Prayers in Joshua:
22. Joshua in complaint because God had not given victory (90 words; Josh 7:7-9). Answered so sin could be put away (Josh 7:10-15).
23. Joshua in the form of a command for the sun and moon to stand still (14 words; Josh 10:12). Answered because of necessity for time to finish God’s work (Josh 10:13).
Nine Prayers in Judges:
24. Israel for guidance (14 words; Judges 1:1). Answered because it was in harmony with the will of God for the nation (Judges 1:2).
25. Gideon for revelation and guidance (135 words; Judges 6:13,15,17-18,22). Answered because of God’s word and will for Israel (Judges 6:12,14,16,20-21,23).
26. Israel for deliverance and forgiveness of sins (36 words; Judges 10:10,15). Answered because of God’s plan for Israel (Judges 11:1-33).
27. Jephthah for victory (55 words; Judges 11:30-31). Answered because of God’s plan for Israel (Judges 11:32).
28. Manoah for an angel to appear and give him directions (91 words; Judges 13:8,11-12,15,17). Answered because of God’s plan for Israel (Judges 13:9,11,13,16,18).
29. Samson for one last victory (33 words; Judges 16:28). Answered because of his reconsecration to the Nazarite vows (Judges 13:4-5; 16:22).
30. Israel for guidance (14 words; Judges 20:23). Answered because of judgment on sin.
31. Israel for guidance (19 words; Judges 20:28). Answered because of judgment on sin.
32. Israel for revelation (24 words; Judges 21:3). No answer recorded.
Six Prayers in 1 Samuel:
33. Hannah for a son (55 words; 1 Sam 1:11). Answered because of God’s plan for Israel (1 Sam 1:20-23) and promises to bless with children upon obedience (Lev 26:3-13; Deut 28:1-14).
34. Hannah to express gratitude for answered prayer (264 words; 1 Sam 2:1-10). No request to answer.
35. Saul for guidance (16 words; 1 Sam 14:37). Unanswered because of sin (1 Sam 13:1-14; 14:37).
36. David for guidance (7 words; 1 Sam 23:2). Answered because of God’s plan (1 Sam 23:2).
37. David for revelation (72 words; 1 Sam 23:10-12). Answered because of God’s plan.
38. David for revelation (10 words; 1 Sam 30:8). Answered because of God’s plan.
References to prayer (1 Sam 7:9; 8:6; 12:18; 15:11; 28:6).
Four Prayers in 2 Samuel:
39. David for revelation (16 words; 2 Sam 2:1). Answered because of God’s plan.
40. David for revelation (14 words; 2 Sam 5:19). Answered because of God’s plan (2 Sam 5:19).
41. David for fulfillment of Davidic covenant (364 words; 2 Sam 7:18-29). Answered partially, and will be fulfilled in all eternity when Christ comes to reign (Isa 9:6-7; Luke 1:32-33; Acts 15:13-18; Rev 11:15; 20:1-10).
42. David for forgiveness of sin (29 words; 2 Sam 24:10). Answered, but judgments fell (2 Sam 24:11-25).
References to prayer (2 Sam 5:23; 12:16; 15:7-8; 21:1).
Five Prayers in 1 Kings:
43. Solomon for wisdom (146 words; 1 Kings 3:6-9). Answered because it pleased God (1 Kings 3:10-14).
44. Solomon, prayer of dedication (1,050 words; 1 Kings 8:23-53). Answered according to obedience of Israel.
45. Elijah for resurrection of boy (35 words; 1 Kings 17:20-21). Answered because of faith in God (1 Kings 17:22-24; Heb 11:35).
46. Elijah for fire from heaven (63 words; 1 Kings 18:36-37). Answered because of faith (1 Kings 18:38).
47. Elijah for death (18 words; 1 Kings 19:4). Unanswered because it was contrary to God’s plan which was to translate him and permit him to live bodily in heaven until time to come back to earth as one of the two witnesses (2 Kings 2:9; Zech 4:11-14; Mal 4:5-6; Rev 11:3-11).
References to prayer (1 Kings 13:6; 18:42-43).
Three Prayers in 2 Kings:
48. Elisha for his servant’s eyes to be opened (11 words; 2 Kings 6:17). Answered by faith.
49. Hezekiah for deliverance (133 words; 2 Kings 19:15-19). Answered by faith (2 Kings 19:35).
50. Hezekiah for a longer life (30 words); he received 15 years more (2 Kings 20:3). Answered by faith (2 Kings 20:5-6).
Two Prayers in 1 Chronicles:
51. Jabez for enlarged coast (33 words; 1 Chron 4:10). Answered because of God’s word to give Israel all the land (1 Chron 4:10; Gen 15:18-21).
52. David for Solomon and Israel (326 words; 1 Chron 29:10-19). Answered partially, in the temporary obedience to God of Solomon and Israel.
References to prayer (1 Chron 5:20; 21:26; 23:30).
Two Prayers in 2 Chronicles:
53. Asa for victory (50 words; 2 Chron 14:11). Answered by faith (2 Chron 14:12-14).
54. Jehoshaphat for victory (224 words; 2 Chron 20:6-12). Answered by faith (2 Chron 20:20-25).
References to prayer (2 Chron 15:13; 33:13).
Two Prayers in Ezra:
55. Ezra-prayer of thanksgiving (50 words; Ezra 7:27-28).
56. Ezra for forgiveness and help (419 words; Ezra 9:5-15). Answered (Ezra 10:1-19).
References to prayer (Ezra 8:21-23).
Nine Prayers in Nehemiah:
57. Nehemiah for confession of sins and help (256 words; Neh 1:5-11).
58. Nehemiah for judgment (53 words; Neh 4:1-6).
59. Nehemiah for help (7 words; Neh 6:9).
60. Nehemiah for help (31 words; Neh 6:14).
61. Israel-confession of sins (1,205 words-the longest prayer; Neh 9:5-38).
62. Nehemiah for blessing (29 words; Neh 13:14).
63. Nehemiah for blessing (18 words; Neh 13:22).
64. Nehemiah for judgment (21 words; Neh 13:29).
65. Nehemiah for blessing (7 words).
Refrences to prayer (Neh 2:4; 4:9; 8:6).
Seven Prayers in Job:
66. Job-prayer of thanksgiving and resignation (30 words; Job 1:20-22).
67. Job in complaint and for relief and forgiveness (114 words; Job 7:17-21). Answered (Job 42:10).
68. Job in complaint and for relief (571 words; Job 9:25-10:22). Answered (Job 42:10).
69. Job in complaint and for life and forgiveness (198 words; Job 14:13-22). Answered (Job 42:10).
70. Job for a fair trial (48 words; Job 23:3-5). Answered (Job 38-42).
71. Job, prayer of confession (34 words; Job 40:3-5)
72. Job, prayer of repentance (87 words; Job 42:1-6). Answered (Job 42:10).
Seventy-two Prayers in Psalms:
73-123. David. In 50 prayer-psalms he made requests for various blessings, most of them being answered because of faith in God’s promises (Psalms 3-7; 9; 12:1-13:6; 16:1-17:15; 19:1-20:9; 22; 25:1-31:24; 35:1-36:12; 38:1-41:13; 51; 54:1-61:8; 64; 69:1-70:5; 86; 108:1-109:31; 119; 124; 132; 139:1-144:15). The ones unanswered will be answered in due time for David even prayed about future events.
124-138. An unknown psalmist (perhaps David) prayed for many kinds of blessings, which were granted or will be granted (Psalms 10; 33; 43:1-44:26; 71; 85; 88; 102; 106; 118; 120; 123; 125; 129; 137).
139-143. Asaph made many requests to God (in 5 prayers) for various kinds of blessing which were granted or will yet be granted (Psalms 74; 79:1-80:19; 82:1-83:18).
144. Moses makes requests to God (Psalms 90).
145. Ethan made requests for God to remember the reproach of His servants (Psalms 89).
Thus, in 72 of the 150 psalms there are personal requests to God, making them definitely prayer-psalms. A few of the other 78 may also be considered such because of the general nature of the subject matter. Even in the listed prayer-psalms many subjects are more outstanding than the prayers. See notes on these psalms.
Three Prayers in Isaiah:
146. Isaiah for cleansing (38 words; Isa 6:5). Answered (Isa 6:6-7).
147. Hezekiah for deliverance (133 words; Isa 37:16-20). Answered (Isa 37:36).
148. Hezekiah for healing and length of days (30 words; Isa 38:3). Answered (Isa 38:5).
References to prayer (Isa 1:15; 7:11; 16:12; 26:16; 55:6-7). There are also prayers that Israel will make in the time of their restoration as a nation (Isa 12; 64).
Eleven Prayers in Jeremiah:
149. Jeremiah, confession of inability to obey God (12 words; Jer 1:6).
150. Jeremiah, accusing God (24 words; Jer 4:10).
151. Jeremiah for judgment (80 words; Jer 10:23-25). Answered (Dan 5).
152. Jeremiah, questioning God (133 words; Jer 12:1-4).
153. Jeremiah for help for Judah (95 words; Jer 14:7-9).
154. Jeremiah for help for Judah (81 words; Jer 14:20-22).
155. Jeremiah, judgment (118 words; Jer 15:15-18).
156. Jeremiah for judgment (158 words; Jer 17:13-18).
157. Jeremiah for judgment (174 words; Jer 18:19-23).
158. Jeremiah for judgment (214 words; Jer 20:7-12).
159. Jeremiah, concerning captivity of Judah (209 words; Jer 32:17-25).
References to prayer (Jer 7:16; 11:14; 14:11; 21:2; 29:7,12; 37:3; 42:2,4,20).
Four Prayers in Lamentations:
160. Jeremiah for judgment (108 words; Lam 1:20-22).
161. Jeremiah for consideration (113 words; Lam 2:20-22).
162. Jeremiah for judgment (158 words; Lam 3:55-66).
163. Jeremiah for the oppressed people of Judah (300 words; Lam 5).
Jeremiah could be called the praying prophet as well as the weeping prophet. He has 15 recorded prayers.
Three Prayers in Ezekiel:
164. Ezekiel protesting what God wanted him to do (41 words; Ezek 4:14).
165. Ezekiel for the remnant (20 words; Ezek 9:8).
166. Ezekiel for the remnant (14 words; Ezek 11:13).
Two Prayers in Daniel:
167. Daniel for forgiveness of sins and fulfillment of prophecy (550 words; Dan 9:1-19).
168. Daniel for revelation (11 words; Dan 12:8).
References to prayer (Dan 2:17-18; 6:10).
Two Prayers in Amos:
169. Amos for forgiveness s (16 words; Amos 7:2).
170. Amos for help (16 words; Amos 7:5).
Three Prayers in Jonah:
171. Sailors for mercy (33 words; Jonah 1:14).
172. Jonah for deliverance from hell (198 words; Jonah 2:1-9).
173. Jonah for death (70 words; Jonah 4:2-3).
Three Prayers in Habakkuk:
174. Habakkuk for God to act (75 words; Hab 1:1-5).
175. Habakkuk for judgment (156 words; Hab 1:12-17).
176. Habakkuk for revival (474 words; Hab 3:2-19).
Seventeen Prayers in Matthew:
177. Jesus, The Lord’s prayer (66 words; Matt 6:9-13).
178. Leper for healing (9 words; Matt 8:2). Answered (Matt 8:3).
179. Centurion for healing of his servant (73 words; Matt 8:6-9). Answered (Matt 8:13).
180. Disciples for help from drowning (5 words; Matt 8:25). Answered (Matt 8:26).
181. Demons for temporary liberty (37 words; Matt 8:29-31). Answered (Matt 8:32).
182. A ruler for healing (18 words; Matt 9:18). Answered (Matt 9:25).
183. A woman for healing (11 words; Matt 9:21). Answered (Matt 9:22).
184. Two blind men for healing (8 words; Matt 9:27). Answered (Matt 9:29-30).
185. Jesus giving thanks to God (38 words; Matt 11:25).
186. Peter to walk on water (13 words; Matt 14:28). Answered (Matt 14:29).
187. Peter for help from drowning (3 words; Matt 14:30). Answered (Matt 14:31).
188. A woman for healing of her daughter (36 words; Matt 15:22-27). Answered (Matt 15:28).
189. A man for healing of his son (39 words; Matt 17:15-16). Answered (Matt 17:18).
190. A mother for exaltation of her 2 sons, James and John (23 words; Matt 20:21). Unanswered because of wrong motive and not in harmony with God’s plan (Matt 20:23).
191. Two blind men for healing (27 words; Matt 20:30-33). Answered (Matt 20:34).
192. Jesus to be saved from death in the garden before He could die on the cross (62 words; Matt 26:39-44). Answered (Heb 5:7).
193. Jesus on the cross (9 words; Matt 27:46).
References to prayer (Matt 6:5-13; 7:7-11; Matt 14:23; 18:19-20; 21:22; 23:14).
Two Prayers in Mark:
194. A demon for temporary freedom (31 words; Mark 1:23-24).
195. Jesus in healing a deaf mute (2 words-the shortest prayer; Mark 7:34). Answered (Mark 7:35).
References to prayer (Mark 1:35; 6:41,46; 9:23; 11:22-24).
Seven Prayers in Luke:
196. Simeon in blessing Jesus (43 words; Luke 2:29-32).
197. Rich man in hell (80 words; Luke 16:24-31).
198. Ten lepers for healing (5 words; Luke 17:13). Answered (Luke 17:14,19).
199. A Pharisee in boasting of his righteousness (34 words; Luke 18:11-12). Unjustified (Luke 18:14).
200. A publican for mercy (7 words; Luke 18:13). Answered, justified (Luke 18:14).
201. Jesus on the cross (10 words; Luke 23:34).
202. Jesus on the cross (8 words; Luke 23:46).
References to prayer (Luke 3:21-22; 5:16; 6:12; 9:28-29; 11:1-13; 18:1-18; 22:31-32).
Five Prayers in John:
203. Nobleman for healing of child (7 words; John 4:49). Answered (John 4:50).
204. People for living bread (6 words; John 6:34).
205. Jesus for resurrection of Lazarus (40 words; John 11:41-43). Answered (John 11:44).
206. Jesus for glorification (19 words; John 12:27-28). Answered (John 12:28).
207. Jesus for disciples (638 words; John 17).
References to prayer (John 7:37-39; 14:12-15; 15:7,16; 16:23-26).
Six Prayers in Acts:
208. Disciples for successor to Judas (41 words; Acts 1:24-25). Answered (Acts 1:26).
209. Peter for healing of lame man (12 words; Acts 3:6). Answered (Acts 3:7-8).
210. Disciples for boldness and power (178 words; Acts 4:24-30). Answered (Acts 4:31-33).
211. Stephen for enemies (13 words; Acts 7:59-60).
212. Paul for instruction (12 words; Acts 9:5-6). Answered (Acts 9:5-6).
213. Peter for resurrection of Tabitha (2 words; Acts 9:40). Answered (Acts 9:40-41).
References to prayer (Acts 1:14; 3:1; 6:4; 8:22,24,34; 10:9,31; 12:5; 16:13-16).
One Prayer in 3 John:
214. That we the readers would prosper and be in health as our soul prospers (18 words; 3 John :2)
Eight Prayers in Revelation:
215. Elders in worship (27 words; Rev 4:11).
216. Angels in worship (22 words; Rev 5:12).
217. All creatures in worship (22 words; Rev 5:13).
218. Martyrs for vengeance (22 words; Rev 6:10).
219. Great multitude in worship (13 words; Rev 7:10).
220. Angels in worship (23 words; Rev 7:12).
221. Glorified saints in worship (56 words; Rev 19:1-6).
222. John for the coming of Jesus Christ a second time, 5 words (Rev 22:20).
Besides the actual worded prayers in these 31 books of the Bible, there are many passages in them, as well as in some of the 35 books containing no prayers, that give much instruction on the subject of prayer. It is thought by some that there are a number of prayers in the epistles, but in reality, these books contain only statements to Christians regarding the apostles praying for them that God would bless them, or they give instructions for Christians to pray and tell them what to pray for. These are not actual prayers addressed to God, however (Rom 1:8-10; 16:20; Eph 1:15-20; 3:13-21; Phil 1:2-7; Col 1:3-14; 1 Thess 1:2-3; 3:9-13; 1 Tim 1:3-7; 2 Tim 4:14-18; James 5:13-18).
Thirty-five Books Where a Direct Prayer Is Not Mentioned
6. Song of Solomon
17. 1 Corinthians
18. 2 Corinthians
23. 1 Thessalonians
24. 2 Thessalonians
25. 1 Timothy
26. 2 Timothy
31. 1 Peter
32. 2 Peter
33. 1 John
34. 2 John
Copyright 2000 (c) by Finis Dake – All rights reserved – Used by Permission (With Minor Corrections)
One way that each of us can improve the quality of our praying is to model our prayers after a mature believer. This is valuable advice to heed well in a church setting and also in our personal Bible reading.
Besides observing the prayers of Christ in the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) or His High Priestly Prayer (John 17), there may be no better person to turn to as a prayer model than the Apostle Paul.
Paul recorded many Spirit-inspired prayers throughout the thirteen New Testament books he authored. God used Paul in a radical way to reach the Gentiles for Christ and spread the gospel over the whole Roman world in the first century. Praying and learning from his prayers can help us deepen and strengthen our prayer lives by gazing deep into the soul of the passionate apostle who said, “I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord” (Philippians 3:8).
My prayer is that God would use the prayers of Paul to transform your prayer life, give you a greater eternal perspective, and reorient your thoughts and affections to be more Gospel-centered and Christ-exalting.
First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. God, whom I serve with my whole heart in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you.
Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved.
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there, so that by God’s will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed. The God of peace be with you all. Amen.
I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every way— in all your speaking and in all your knowledge—because our testimony about Christ was confirmed in you. Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task?
This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has give you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
Now we pray to God that you will not do anything wrong. Not that people will see that we have stood the test but that you will do what is right even though we may seem to have failed. For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. We are glad whenever we are weak but you are strong; and our prayer is for your perfection.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. . . .
For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.
For this reason, I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
We always thank God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints—the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth. You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit. For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should.
We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.
And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe. For you, brothers, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own countrymen the same things those churches suffered from the Jews, who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to all men in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last.
How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you? Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith. Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing. Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring. . . .
With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men, for not everyone has faith. But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one. We have confidence in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we command. May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.
Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.
I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service.
I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time. . . .
I thank God, whom I serve, as my forefathers did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers. Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.
May the Lord show mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains. On the contrary, when he was in Rome, he searched hard for me until he found me. May the Lord grant that he will find mercy from the Lord on that day! You know very well in how many ways he helped me in Ephesus.
The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.
Grace be with you all.
I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
Prayer is both marvelous and mysterious. The idea of communicating with the Creator of the universe seems almost ludicrous. And certainly presumptuous. Not to mention intimidating.
Why would God want to talk with us? Is there a right and wrong way to pray? Why does God answer some prayers but not others? Does it matter that we only have a little faith?
Thankfully, the Bible gives us insight into the hows and whys of prayer. Since God invites us to talk with him, it’s no surprise he gives us guidelines. I’ve compiled a list of what I consider the ten most important verses on prayer:
1. Luke 18:13-14: “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
These verses, from the well-known story of the Pharisee and the tax collector praying in the temple, reveals the prayer that allows us to enter into a relationship with God: “God, have mercy on me, a sinner.” The tax collector was honest with God about his sin. He humbled himself, repented, and acknowledged his need of God’s mercy. God answered his prayer and saved him.
Bottom line—the first step in developing a prayer life is calling upon God for salvation.
2. Psalm 66:18: “If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.”
This verse from David’s psalm shows us a major hindrance to God’s willingness to hear our prayers—unconfessed sin. Some might ask, “If sin prevents God from hearing our prayers, then none of us have a chance, because we all sin, even after we’re saved.”
A careful reading of Psalm 66:18, however, draws our attention to the word “cherished.” “If I had cherished sin…” To cherish sin means to embrace it. To love it, hold on to it, and refuse to give it up. This is vastly different from committing a sin that we regret, confess, and forsake as soon as the Holy Spirit brings it to our attention. God doesn’t expect us to be sinless, but he does call us to deal with our sin as soon as possible (1 John 1:9).
Bottom line—we can’t live a consistently sinful lifestyle and expect God to hear our prayers.
3. Psalm 34:15: “The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry.”
If we have a right relationship with God and are earnestly seeking to follow and honor him with our lives, we never have to wonder if he’s listening to our prayers. On the contrary, this verse assures us that he is carefully attuned to our lives and eager to hear every prayer that comes from our lips.
Bottom line—God hears the prayers of those who put their trust in him.
4. Daniel 9:18: “We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy.”
This beautiful excerpt from Daniel’s prayer on behalf of the Jews exiled in Babylon shows us a profound truth about prayer—that God answers our prayers because of his mercy, not our good works. Many believers think their good works obligate or persuade God to act on their behalf. And while God does call us to live holy lives, it is not our obedience that moves God to answer our prayers, it is his great mercy toward us.
Bottom line—God’s mercy, not our goodness, is the basis for answered prayers.
5. Psalm 5:3: “In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.”
The psalmist who penned Psalm 5:3 models the attitude we should have when we pray—that of eager expectation. We should believe God will answer our prayers and diligently watch for his hand at work. The psalmist also shows us that when we pray early in the day, we have the rest of the day to anticipate God’s answer.
Bottom line—when we pray, we can wait in eager anticipation for God to work on our behalf.
6. 1 John 5:14: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
God delights in answering prayers that align with his will. But how do we know what God’s will is? The most reliable way to know is by reading his Word. As we seek God through Bible reading and prayer, we get to know his heart and gain wisdom and spiritual insight. This gives us a greater understanding of how to pray according to his will, and a greater chance of having our prayers answered.
Bottom line—God answers every prayer that aligns with his will.
7. James 4:3: “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”
This verse from the book of James tells us why God says “No” to many of our prayers—they are selfish, self-centered, and sometimes downright bad for us. Because God is wise and loving, like any good parent, he will not give things that will harm us or others.
Bottom line—God will say no to our prayers if we ask for something for the wrong reason or for the wrong purpose.
8. Matthew 26:42: “He (Jesus) went away a second time and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.’”
Jesus set the supreme example of surrender and submission to the Father’s will when he prayed for God to spare him from dying on the cross. Because he was fully human, he was fearful and reluctant to experience the agony of the crucifixion. Because he was fully God, he could have refused to die, but instead, in humble trust and submission, he prayed, “may your will be done.”
On the surface, death by crucifixion seemed to end Christ’s ministry. In reality, his death on the cross paved the way for countless believers to receive eternal life by believing in his death and resurrection.
Bottom line—we can surrender our will to God’s in complete confidence that he knows what’s best.
9. Mark 9:24: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
This honest confession comes from a man whose son was demon-possessed. He wasn’t fully convinced Jesus had the power to deliver his son, but he asked anyway.
This passage debunks two of the greatest misconceptions about prayer—that if we have enough faith, God will answer our prayers, and if we don’t, he won’t. Scripture doesn’t support the idea that great faith produces great miracles and small faith prevents them. Instead, God tells us to ask in faith, believing that he can and will answer our prayers in the way he knows is best. Even frightened, tiny, mustard-seed faith like this father had can and does move the hand of God.
Bottom line—it’s not how much faith we have that matters, but who we have faith in.
10. James 5:16: “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”
What a beautiful affirmation James, the half-brother of Jesus, gives in this short verse. When we wonder if prayer accomplishes anything, he encourages us—not only is prayer powerful, but it’s effective. “You’re not wasting your time,” he seems to call to us. “Keep praying! God is using your prayers to accomplish his will.”
Bottom line: The prayers of godly Christians work.
I don’t know why God uses the prayers of his people to accomplish his work in the world, but I’m glad he does. I’m humbled to think we can talk to him at any time of the day or night. I’m grateful that he’s never too busy to hear our prayers and act on our behalf.
My prayer for us all is that we will never take for granted the privilege and the power of prayer.
Lori Hatcher is a blogger, inspirational speaker, and author of the Christian Small Publisher’s 2016 Book of the Year, Hungry for God … Starving for Time, Five-Minute Devotions for Busy Women. A Toastmasters International contest-winning speaker, Lori’s goal is to help busy women connect with God in the craziness of everyday life. She especially loves small children, soft animals, and chocolate. You’ll find her pondering the marvelous and the mundane on her blog, Hungry for God. . . Starving for Time. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter (@lorihatcher2) or Pinterest (Hungry for God).
Publication date: August 8, 2016
There are many accounts of answered prayers in the bible. The fact is that God has always been in the business of answering prayers.
It is not uncommon for Christians ” even Christians with a long walk with God ” to feel doubt when praying.
No matter how many times God has come through for you in the past, it still seems doubtful that the Creator of the Universe would take the time to hear and answer your prayers.
Lets go over some stories of answered prayers in the bible.
Table of contents
Hannah Prays for a Baby
I Samuel, chapters 1 and 2
Hannah desperately wanted a child. In those days,
a woman could not go to the doctor to learn the reason for her infertility.
Instead, being unable to have a baby was considered a shame and a curse.
Hannah cried out to God in such a raw, emotional way that the priest who
heard her prayers actually thought that she was drunk. But she wasnt.
She was desperate, and she knew that the only one with the power to give
her the desire of her heart was the Lord.
God heard Hannah and her prayer touched the Lord so much that He was moved
to give her a child. As promised, Hannah gave her child back to the Lord and
Samuel grew up to become a great prophet.
Elijah Prays for God to Prove His Power
I Kings 18:20-40
Elijah was frustrated with those who worshipped Baal, and wanted very much
for the one true God to prove His power in front of the followers of Baal.
After those followers tried unsuccessfully to call down fire from their god,
Elijah prayed a very simple prayer. He asked that God would send down fire
and consume the altar.
God answered that prayer in a powerful way and all of the followers of Baal
who were present had no choice but to confess the power of the Lord.
David Prays for Forgiveness
One prayer that every Christian will pray at one time or another is
the prayer for forgiveness. This is also the type of prayer that can be very difficult
to believe that God will answer.
When you sin, it is easy to feel far from God, but looking to the example
of David can be a wonderful reminder about the power of Gods forgiveness.
David had committed adultery and then had a man killed in an attempt to
cover his sin. When he fully realized what he had done, he became broken before God,
and one of the most heartfelt prayers in the Bible, Psalms 51, was written.
God did forgive David for his sins, and David went on to live for God for
the rest of his days and remained, as the Bible called him, a man after Gods own heart.
Does God Always Answer Prayers?
While the above are good examples of God answering prayers in the bible,
it is important to remember that sometimes God says no.
This doesnt mean that he hasnt answered. It just means that He sees the
big picture and knows what is best for you in the long run.
God has always loved His people. Also, keep a journal about the prayers that
He has answered for you. All of this will work together to increase your faith
and make you even more pleasing in the eyes of the Lord.
Do you have a good story about god interceding on your behalf?